LB - Favour & Wilhelmsen Probate

Home | Classifieds | Place an ad | Obituaries | Public Notices | Galleries | Opinions | Real Estate Search | 928 Media Lab | Contact Us | Subscribe
Prescott Valley Tribune | Prescott Valley, Arizona

home : latest news : latest news February 6, 2016

2/17/2010 10:09:00 AM
Town proposes legislation to bring special prison vote
Heidi Dahms-Foster
Special to the Tribune

Prescott Valley officials have proposed legislative action that could bring the issue of a prison to a public vote before the council takes any more action on the proposal.

Town Manager Larry Tarkowski said the town has talked with Rep. Andy Tobin, asking him to propose a bill that would allow the town to field a special election that currently would not be allowed by state law.

However, Brad Fain of the Fain Signature Group said Tuesday that his family feels the action is premature. If a special election were held, he said, and residents voted in favor of a prison, then council approved rezoning and annexation, opponents could still force a referendum and cause the community to go through another vote.

"Do we want to go through the public process once or twice?" he said. "We need to get all the facts so we can see what is the best method to go forward."

Brad Fain read a statement in the public comment portion of the Feb. 10 Prescott Valley Town Council meeting that stated the Fains would again bring the prison proposal before the council.

"I don't want you, as the public leaders, to be caught off guard and surprised, but I want you to be prepared and to get educated on this opportunity so that you can cast a vote and send this decision to the public for a final vote," he said.

Before a vote could occur, the council would first have to annex and approve rezoning for the land on which the prison would stand. Then, residents could gather signatures to petition for a referendum. That process occurred when Prescott Valley residents in opposition to a proposed Walmart here forced a vote, which a majority supported in a special election.

In fact, it was the development process of the Granville subdivision and the Walmart that the Fains say has brought the current tension about the prison proposal process.

Bill Fain said in a recent letter to council that "no growth" factions who were in opposition to a planned community residential project subjected the Granville subdivision to "intensive public scrutiny" before the council gave its approval.

After council approved Walmart, Fain said, "a minority advocacy group with a strong union bias ... got enough signatures to require a public vote. Prescott Valley residents approved the Walmart by nearly a two-to-one margin," he said.

This process cost the town a year's delay, Fain said, and a subsequent union suit against the town and the Fains, which the union lost, cost another year's delay, at which time the Walmart project fell victim to the declining economy.

"(Walmart) has now been delayed for more than three years and lost approximate revenue in regional property taxes of $160,000 per year, and lost revenue in municipal taxes of $760,000 per year," Fain said.

Fain said he feels that the same factions are at work against the prison proposal, and have again stymied the public process.

One thing both sides have agreed upon is that they desire a public vote on the proposal.

"We would like to see legislation that would allow for a special election on the single issue of a prison proposal in a community," Tarkowski said. "(A prison) has the opportunity and likelihood to change the complexion of a community, and that's why the legal solution of a special ballot might be our best option."

Tobin said Tuesday that he thinks it would be a good idea for towns to be able to bring such issues before their residents, but that he had not yet had the opportunity to study the proposal.

Brad Fain said he is not ready for such a bill without talking with Tobin, other legislators, and town officials.

"I think we just need to slow down the process, and get all the facts before moving forward. We're dealing with speculation and emotions, and people are hearing things that are extreme opposites. There are not enough facts to say where the middle ground is. That's my concern. Our goal in the end is that we really want to work with the town again."

Bill Fain said, "We don't want to stir up controversy and conflict within the community. The proper way, in our opinion, to deal with it is to put it to an informed public vote. Then if the citizens in this community determine that they don't want a prison, our family is in full support. On the other hand, if they decide that it brings more benefit than downside, then we are in full support."

Tarkowski said he has put discussion of the election option on Thursday night's council study session at 5:30 p.m. in council chambers. The council will discuss the issue but does not take public comment during study sessions.

Related Stories:
• Editorial: Vote on prison proposal could help to put divisive issue to rest
• Letter: Check the facts on Chino, Calif. prison
• Letter: Town should support prison
• Prison proposal: CCA won't resume interest in Fain property
• Fains want to annex, rezone land for proposed prison
• CCA officially withdraws prison proposal in Prescott Valley

    Most Viewed     Recently Commented
•   Bradshaw ready to compete for students (481 views)

•   University leaves Prescott Valley (378 views)

•   PV schools earn bragging rights (290 views)

•   Starbucks among new businesses near Kohl's (280 views)

•   Prescott Valley closes Fain Park (277 views)

Reader Comments

Posted: Thursday, February 18, 2010
Article comment by: M. Johnson

It's pretty obvious, the majority does not want a prison. Knowing that, the Fains are stalling for time to initiate a public relations blitz so they can have their way - again.

Article Comment Submission Form
Comments are not posted immediately. Submissions must adhere to our Use of Service Terms of Use agreement. Rambling or nonsensical comments may not be posted. Comments are limited to Facebook character limits. In order for us to reasonably manage this feature we may limit excessive comment entries.
Submit an Article Comment
First Name:
Last Name:
Anti-SPAM Passcode Click here to see a new mix of characters.
This is an anti-SPAM device. It is not case sensitive.

Advanced Search

HSE - We want to hear from you
Find more about Weather in Prescott Valley, AZ
Click for weather forecast

Find It Features Blogs Milestones Extras Submit Other Publications Local Listings
Classifieds | Place an ad | Public Notices | Galleries | Opinions | Real Estate Search | Contact Us | Subscribe | e-newsletter | RSS | Site Map
LB - Orthopaedic Specialists of Central Arizona

© Copyright 2016 Prescott Newspapers, Inc. The Prescott Valley Tribune is the information source for Prescott Valley area communities in Northern Arizona. Original content may not be reprinted or distributed without the written permission of Prescott Newspapers, Inc. Prescott Newspapers Online is a service of Prescott Newspapers, Inc. By using the Site, ®, you agree to abide and be bound by the Site's terms of use and Privacy Policy, which prohibit commercial use of any information on the Site. Click here to submit your questions, comments or suggestions. Prescott Newspapers Online is a proud publication of Western News&Info Inc.® All Rights Reserved.

Software © 1998-2016 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved